HIT scholarships are given to the emerging talent in the Scottish hospitality industry, at all stages in their career, and even the best need to keep learning new skills to develop in their chosen profession. So it was fantastic to help BBC Bake Off Creme de la Creme winner Helen Vass develop her skills even further with a pastry development course at the renowned Callebaut Chocolate Academy in Spain.
Helen is a pastry chef in Glasgow, and since Bake Off has also been running pop-up dessert restaurants around Scotland and teaching pastry classes. She is now in the process of setting up her own pastry business, Dulce by Helen Vass. Helen recently won the Callebaut Patisserie Chef of the Year Award at the CIS Excellence Awards in Glasgow and the Dessert Gold Medal at the Scottish Food Awards in Edinburgh.
The course allowed her to learn more about modern pastry tarts, new flavour combinations and new decoration techniques. Helen said: “This course was great fun and I learned many new skills to bring back to Scotland. There were people from different parts of Spain as well as from further afield in South America and this allows you to think outside the box and see how other pastry chefs are inspired when creating their desserts. It was a fantastic experience which I will put to good use with my future projects. I would urge anyone who is passionate about the hospitality industry in Scotland to apply for a HIT Scholarship as you will be able to broaden your horizons and put what you have learned into practice in your current job and further down the line.”
Helen is already paying it forward, and earlier this year had a HIT scholar join her at an afternoon tea pop-up event she was baking for at Dunkeld House Hotel.